For the second time in a week, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith took to the airwaves to shake up the Cleveland Cavaliers by stating LeBron James may choose to play elsewhere next season.
ESPN loudmouth Stephen A. Smith must really love sticking it to Cavs fans, because now the controversial host of ESPN’s “First Take” is citing sources that say LeBron could leave Cleveland after this season.
Smith appeared on ESPN Radio’s Jorge & Izzy and made these comments, via Hoops Rumors…
“What everybody who’s close to him continuously reminds me of is: don’t you dare take LeBron for granted or think he’s trapped into staying in Cleveland just because he came back. Don’t put it past him that he’ll get so annoyed that he’ll leave again if he feels like he’s being taken for granted, ran into the ground and, essentially, misused.”
Smith plays into what a lot of Cavs fans grew sick of earlier in the week when he reported anonymous sources stating Irving was unhappy in Cleveland. Now, Smith is back with his anonymous sources playing the old, worn-out storyline that James will leave Cleveland again if he feels like ‘he’s being taken for granted.”
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Let me be the voice of reason here, Cavs Country. Smith isn’t making this up, but that doesn’t mean his sources are ironclad. This source could be the friend-of-a-friend of LeBron’s, but in the media, you can legitimately call this a source, and report it as such. If you couldn’t, the Internet would be a boring place and nobody would generate any web traffic. This is the kind of trouble you run into with anonymous sources. We just don’t know how credible Smith’s are, in this particular case.
Something else to consider…James would be crazy to leave right now. He has an owner that is essentially willing to burn money by going into the luxury tax. He also has a general manager in David Griffin that has done an excellent job of trying to upgrade the roster whenever possible.
There’s also the whole path to The Finals thing…while the Raptors have given Cleveland trouble in the regular season, does anyone really think they’re going to take the Cavs in a seven game series once LeBron, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love start playing playoff ball?
If you need to think about this, stop. The answer is no. The easiest path to The Finals is in the East, and unless LeBron plans to play fo rSan Antonio or Golden State, it’s not going to get any easier for him.
And, yes, this includes the Heat. So save the Instagram bromance photo links in the comment section of LeBron and Dwyane Wade in Miami. Remember, the Spurs made the Heat look really old just a few ago in the Finals. That’s why James left. Wade is older, and Chris Bosh is dealing with some serious health issues. Adding James does not make them an NBA title contender.
LeBron isn’t going anywhere, and the only thing to come out this is publicity for bloviators such as Stephen A. Smith.